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in this region. It has been nothing more the German machine guns are located. than a steady but uninterrupted creep As soon as the heavy guns have done forward, trench by trench, until a favor their work, the barrage fire is started, able moment for a more definite attack usually with shrapnel, the object being
The result is that while the the old trenches and the purpose to keep changes in position are too small to ap the German gunners in their dugouts pear on any but a large-scale map, the until the infantry is upon them. This German position is getting more and barrage, or curtain of fire, is kept up more difficult to retain.
until the infantry is not more than The line of advance up the Ancre is
twenty-five or fifty yards from the the most dangerous that the British
trench, when it is lifted and the infantry could adopt. It draws the noose tighter
go down into the dugouts, hoping to about the Germans in what still remains
cover the distance before the machine of the old salient, and if it continues
guns can come into play. will throw the British so far in the rear While this is going on, the air scouts of the German positions south of He are busy trying to locate the enemy's buterne that a retreat will become neces artillery. If this cannot be done the sary. In fact, not a great many more chances of winning are much reduced. blows will have to be delivered before But, given superiority in shell and the Germans are pinched out of the en ascendency in the air, the end is inestire salient and the line drawn straight capable. Not only are the Allies superior from Arras to Peronne.
in shell, but they also control the air.
There are actually more men in the BritGermany's Serious Plight
ish Royal Flying Corps today than there The most important development of were men in the regular British Army the month, however, has been the action when the war broke out. With these adof Germany in what in reality amounts vantages the Germans will have a hard to a declaration of war against all neu time this Spring in keeping the Allies trals in issuing her submarine notifica from shattering their lines and driving tion. What can be the necessity that them out of France. forced Germany to this step?
But this is only a part. The German In the first place, German efficiency
people are running very short of other as exemplified in this war has been mis
things. Whether it is of food or not, no understood and in a way misnamed. It one knows. It would seem that, in spite was not so much efficiency as prepared of the blockade, it is impossible to force ness, made with an understanding more Germany into defeat by hunger. But to acute perhaps than that of the Entente
starve it in other things besides food is Powers of what the war would mean.
entirely another thing. War demands But the degree of preparedness which certain raw materials which Germany the Germans had reached has now been
does not possess within her own confines exceeded by the Allies. In trained and
nor those of her allies. These can be obwell drilled men they are greatly su
tained only through importation, and perior. In guns and shell production
Germany cannot import. The amount she they also have the decided advantage. can get from Holland, Denmark, and
England today is manufacturing more Sweden is negligible. Among these supshells than she and her allies can use. plies that are lacking are cotton for use The importance of shells may be readily in the manufacture of high explosives; seen when the various steps in a battle copper for use in shell manufacture, wool are understood. The first step is the for clothing her soldiers; rubber and fat3. heavy gunfire with high explosive shells. All these things Germany must bring The function of this is to destroy the into the country, and if her supply is wire entanglements and demolish the nearing exhaustion, her plight is despertrenches. It does not, however, as ate. But desperation does not pardon general thing reach the dugouts where her form of lawlessness.
A BRITISH REVIEW Major Gen. F. B. Maurice of the British War Office stated on Feb. 15 that since the beginning of the new year the trench raids which the British forces have been carrying on have netted a gain in ground to an average depth of threequarters of a mile over a front of 10,000 yards and the capture of 2,000 Germans, and also have greatly encouraged the British troops. On the debit side of the ledger, General Maurice said, the total losses of the British have not been as
great as the number of German prisoners. He added the following:
“We are now capturing Germans of all ages, including both ends of the age limits, from 17 to 60 now being forced into the German Army. While it would not be safe to say that deterioration of the German Army has become general, it can be said that the prisoners show marked evidence of such decline, and the fact that they have abandoned villages without attempting to defend them confirms this impression.”
Progress of the War
Recording Campaigns on All Fronts and Collateral Events From January 12, Up to and Including
February 18, 1917
GERMAN-AMERICAN RELATIONS On Jan. 31-The United States Government
received from Germany a note and memorandum in which she replied to President Wilson's address before the United States Senate on peace, denounced the Allies for their rejection of her peace overtures and for alleged violations of international law and announced that beginning Feb. 1 German submarines would sink without warning any merchant vessel entering a prescribed zone around the coasts of the allied countries, thus repudiating the pledges she had made in her note of May 4, 1916, in reply to a note from the United States on the Sussex case. Under certain conditions one American vessel was to be allowed to pass through the safety zone to and from Falmouth each week. Two days later the German Ambassador was authorized to extend this offer to include
any American ship. On Feb. 3—The United States severed diplo
matic relations with Germany. Count von Bernstorff received his passports, Ambassador Gerard was recalled and President Wilson laid the situation before Congress and notified neutrals of the break, expressing the hope that they would find it possible to take similar action. American interests in Germany were put into the hands of the Spanish Minister and German interests in the United States were put into the hands of the Swiss Minister. Steps were taken immediately to protect the country against spies and conspirators, defense measures were rushed in Congress, railroads were prepared for emergencies and plans were
made for the mobilization of the country's
industries. On the same day, the Housatonic, an Ameri
can ship, was sunk by a German submarine off the Scilly Islands. She received full warning, however, and her entire crew
was saved. The American Government demanded the im
mediate release of the 72 Imerican citizens held as prisoners of war in Germany after being brought to a German port on the Yarrowdale as captives from the crews of merchant ships sunk by a German raider. The German Government announced on Feb. 4 that these men would be released, but as she did not act on her promise Secretary Lansing, acting through the Swiss Minister, made a second demand that they be freed. On Feb. 15 a mezsage from Berlin stated they had been
released. On Feb. 5-The British S. S. Eavestone was
sunk without warning and an American negro seaman was killed as the boats
which left the sinking vessel were shelled. Official information was received from the
American Minister at Copenhagen that Ambassador Gerard and all Americans, including consular officials, were being detained in Germany pending assurance of fair treatment of Ambassador Bernstorff and the crews of interned German ships. The German Foreign Office asked Ambassador Gerard to reaffirm the treaties of 1799 and 1828, but he refused to act and referred the German officials to Spanish and Swiss intermediaries. It is believed that Germany was influenced by alarmist dispatches concerning the treatment of
German subjects and property in the
United States. On Feb. 10—The Swedish Minister conveyed
to the State Department an informal offer from Germany to revive negotiations for the safety of Americans at sea. At the request of Secretary Lansing the suggestion was put in iting. The State Department sent a reply to the Swiss Minister announcing that no discussion was possible until submarine warfare against neutrals was abandoned. Germany later
repudiated this offer to negotiate. Ambassador Gerard left Berlin in safety with
his party on Feb. 10 and on Feb. 17 word was received that all American consular officials would be allowed to leave Ger
many. The American sailing schooner Lyman M.
Law was destroyed off the coast of Sardinia by a submarine, but whether by an Austrian or German boat has not been ascertained.
SUBMARINE BLOCKADE Between Jan. 13 and Jan. 31 twenty-four mer
chant ships were sunk in the war zone.
Jan. 31 the German Government announced to neutral nations that beginning Feb. 1 German submarines would sink without warning any merchant vessel entering a prescribed zone extending from north of the British Isles around into the Mediterranean Sea. A prohibited zone was established for hospital ships on the ground of their alleged misuse by the Allies. Austria-Hungary issued a similar note. As a concession to Holland, the safety zone was later extended off the
coast of the Netherlands. Spain, Brazil, Argentina, Cuba, and Switzer
land sent notes of protest and the Chinese Government indorsed the action of the United States in breaking off diplomatic
relations. From Feb. 1 to Feb. 18, 121 vessels of 245,437
tons were sunk in the danger zone. These included the s. ,S. California on which forty-one lives were lost, the Afric, two Belgian relief ships, the Euphrates, and the Lars Kruse, and two American vessels, the stea mship Housatonic and the
schooner Lyman M. Law. CAMPAIGN IN EASTERN EUROPE Jan. 13–Germans on the Riga front attack
Russian lines east of Kalnzem south of
Lake Babit. Jan. 23–German attacks in the Riga region
north of Lake Kuggerion repulsed. Jan. 25-Feb. 4-Indecisive battles on the Kaln
zem-Chlok line. Feb. 7-Russians repulse Teutons on the
Beresina River. Feb. 8-Russians attack Teuton positions near
Kirlibaba and capture first-line trench. Feb. 9-Teutons shell Stanislau.
BALKAN CAMPAIGN Jan. 12-Teutons capture the town of Labur
tea in Rumania; Russians driven back toward the Sereth between Braila and Ga
latz. Jan. 13—Bulgarian troops capture a monas
tery at the junction of the Buzeu and Sereth rivers; Rumanians throw Teutons back on the River Kasino and
occupy their trenches. Jan. 11-Teutonic forces capture the town of
Vadeni, six miles southwest of Galatz. Jan. 15—Bulgarian artillery shells the town of
Galatz from the Dobrudja bank of the Danube ; Russians repulse Teuton attacks north of Focsani; fighting renewed on
the Macedonian front; Vardar bombarded. Jan. 17-Russians retake Vadeni; Rumanians
in the Trotus-Kasino region throw attack
ing Teuton forces back in disorder. Jan. 19-Teutons bombard Oena in Moldavia ;
Russian attacks north of the Suchitza Val
ley repulsed. Jan. 20_Germans take Nanesti on the Sereth
River. Jan. 21-Russians retire across the Sereth
River. Jan. 22–Russians repulsed in attack on Ger
man advance lines in the Putna Valley. Jan. 23–Teutons resume their advance in Do
brudja; Bulgarian forces cross the south
ern estuary of the Danube near Tultcha. Jan. 27-Rumanians in Moldavia drive Teu
tons south of the Kasino and Suchitza
Valleys. Jan. 28--Russians assume the offensive
against Austro-German fortified positions on both sides of the Kimpolung-Jacobeni road and break through the Teuton lines
along a front of nearly two miles. Jan. 31-Russians capture Austro-German for
tifications east of Jacobeni. Feb. 8-French occupy Ojani in Macedonia
and reach Vestini. Feb. 13–Teutonic troops take the offensive in
the Cerna bend and take an Italian posi
tion east of Paralovo. Feb. 14-Germans recapture two heights east
of Jacobeni; Italians recapture greater part of trenches occupied by Germans at
Hill 1,050, east of Paralovo. CAMPAIGN IN WESTERN EUROPE Jan. 12–British make silght gains north of
Beaumont. Jan. 14Germans repulsed by British near
Guidecourt. Jan. 15—British raid German lines east of
Loos. Jan. 17-British forces on the Ancre launch
successful attack north of Beaucourt. Jan, 22-Germans repulsed in two attacks on
the right bank of the Meuse. Jan. 23—British make successful raid north
east of Neuville-St. Vaast. Jan. 26-French, in strong counterattack,
drivé Germans from positions near Hill
304. Jan. 27–British on the Somme capture com
manding position near Le Transloy; new French attack near Hill 304 repulsed.
Jan. 28-French launch successful attack
against German positions between Les
Eparges and the Calonne trench. Jan. 31-French penetrate the first two lines
of German trenches in Lorraine, south of
Leintrey. Feb. 2-British make successful raid near
Guidecourt. Feb. 4-British advance 500 yards east of
Beaucourt. Feb. 5-Germans fail in four counterattacks
against the new British line east of Beau
court. Feb. 7-British force the Germans out of
Grandcourt. Feb. 8-British drive the Germans from a
dominating height near Sailly-Saillisel and advance on both banks of the Ancre; French capture German patrol near Bonzee in the Verdun sector and take some prisoners in a surprise raid on the Ger
man trenches in the Argonne. Feb. 12-British occupy 600 yards of German
trenches north of Beaucourt. Feb. 13–British penetrate several hundred
yards into Teuton lines east of Souchez. Feb. 14-British capture strong point south
east of Grandcourt and penetrate to Ger
man third line near Arras. Feb. 16-Germans pierce the Champagne line
and make gains south of Ripont. Feb. 17-British troops on the Ancre capture
German positions on a front of about a mile and a half on both sides of the river and carry an important German position
north of Baillecourt. Feb. 18—British capture slopes dominating
the villages of Miraumont and Petit Miraumont.
ITALIAN CAMPAIGN Jan. 19-Austrians bombard Italian lines in
the Oppachiasella sector on the Carso
front. Jan. 24-Italians repulse Austrian ski attacks
in the Tenale district. Feb. 12-Italians re-establish their lines east
of Gorizia and expel Austrians from captured trenches.
ASIA MINOR Jan. 15- British take a town on the Shatt
el-Hai River south of Kut-el-Amara. Jan. 23–British force Turks to evacuate a po
sition east of Kut-el-Amara. Jan. 26–British consolidate gain of 1,000
yards of Turkish first-line trenches southwest of Kut-el-Amara and positions of Turkish second-line trenches in Mesopo
tamia. Jan. 29- British take two and a half miles
of Turkish trenches southwest of Kut-el
Amara. Feb. 1-Turks advance in Persia; occupy
Dizabad and approach Sultanabad. Feb. 3- British advance east and west of
Tigris-Hai junction. Feb. 13-British establish a line across the
Tigris bend west of Kut-el-Amara, completely hemming in the Turks.
GERMAN EAST AFRICA Jan. 26—Germans retire in the direction of Utete and Utembe Lake.
AERIAL RECORD Italian and French aviators raided Austrian
seaplane bases at Trieste and the arsenal
and harbor at Pola. Turkish munitions factories at Bagdad were
bombarded by the British. On the western front French aviators
dropped bombs on the military works at Lahr in Baden and on the railway station and barracks at Karlsruhe, and British airmen bombarded Bruges and Ghistelles. The Germans raided Amiens and Dunkirk.
NAVAL RECORD A Russian squadron, in a raid off the Ana
tolian coast on Jan. 13, sank forty Turk
ish food ships. Two Austrian submarines, the VC-12 and the
VT-12, were captured by the Italians. A German raider operating in the South At
lantic sank or captured twenty-five allied merchant ships. The Yarrowdale, which she armed, was taken into a German Port with neutral sailors from the lost vessels on board. These men were detained in Germany as prisoners of war. a step which led to an issue with the United
States Government. On the night of Jan. 22-23 two battles were
fought in the North Sea. In one a British torpedo boat was reported sunk. In the other a German destroyer was reported sunk and other torpedo craft scattered. The Germans, however, denied the loss of
a ship. The British auxiliary cruiser Laurentic was
sunk by a mine off the coast of Ireland,
Jan. 25. On Jan. 27 the British Admiralty issued a
statement declaring an enlarged area of the North Sea dangerous to shipping on
account of belligerent operations. A British cruiser gave battle to three Ger
man raiders off the coast of Brazil on Feb. 15. One raider was reported damaged, one probably beached, and the third escaped.
MISCELLANEOUS Greece has accepted in their entirety the de
mands of the Allies. Great Britain, in a note sent to the United
States Jan. 13 supplementing the reply of the Entente to President Wilson's peace
note, named the bases for a durable peace. On Jan. 22 President Wilson, in an address
before the United States Senate, laid down the principles which he thought should guide the United States in its participation in a peace league.
DISMISSAL OF THE GERMAN AMBASSADOR man steamship Kronprincessin Cecilie T four in the afternoon of St. Val
testified in a Federal Court hearing for entine's day, Feb. 14, 1917, the Scan
the sale of the vessel that the day the dinavian-American liner Frederik VIII.
new German submarine order was prosailed from New York for Copenhagen,
mulgated and three days before the sevcarrying Count Johann H. von Bern
erance of relations he had been ordered storff and some 200 German diplomatic
by an official of the German Embassy to and consular agents. The departure of disable the steamship so that the United Count Bernstorff is a far more serious
States Government could make no use of matter than was the earlier going of Dr.
it in the event of hostilities. This is Dumba, the Austro-Hungarian Ambassa
strong evidence that the German Amdor. The charges made against the lat
bassador expected the break and was not ter referred to him personally; he had
loath to impugn th fairness of our Govceased to be, in diplomatic language, per
ernment if war should ensue. sona grata to the Government of the United States. His departure made no breach between the United States and
CANNONS ON LINERS Austria-Hungary; his work at Washing- THE question whether liners and merton was immediately put into the hands chant ships should carry guns for of Baron Zwiedinek, and Count Tarnow defense against unlawful attacks seems ski von Tarnow was, in course of time, to have entered its modern phase when, appointed as his successor and accepted on March 27, 1913, a year and four by the Government of the United States, months before the beginning of the world though conditions which have arisen war, Winston Churchill made a speech since that acceptance have, so far, pre
in the House of Commons upon the navy vented the presentation of his credentials estimates, in which he announced that from the Emperor Charles.
the British Admiralty proposed to enBut the departure of Count Bernstorff courage ship owners in the British Isles is a censure not of the person of the to provide for the defense of their vessels Ambassador, but of his Government; no in time of war by lending them guns, Chargé d'Affaires takes his place. The furnishing them with ammunition and German Embassy is closed. The cessa training crews for them, provided that tion of direct relations is complete, the ship owners would pay for the necthough indirect relations are still possi essary structural alterations in their ble through Dr. Ritter, the diplomatic ships. Winston Churchill's idea, which representative of Switzerland. Yet, had the support of Mr. Asquith's Cabiwithin the last two years, there has been net, was not, apparently, to arm mersharp criticism of Count Bernstorff's per chant ships for aggressive action in time sonal methods. His official warning con of war, but rather to enable the larger cerning the Lusitania might easily have merchantmen to protect themselves caused a breach. The activities of the against attacks by warships, whether German military and naval attachés, who surface craft or submarines. A very are technically independent of the em clear distinction must be drawn between bassy, since they report to the German purely defensive action of this kind and War Office and Admiralty, not to the the creation of a volunteer fleet like that, Foreign Minister, led to their own dis for example, of Russia, where merchant missal, and might easily have involved ships are built with the intention of turnCount Bernstorff also. But the strong ing them into auxiliary cruisers in time est feeling was, perhaps, aroused by the of war, as was done with vessels of the fact that he was able instantly to stop American Line in the war between the all outrages against munition plants. United States and Spain, in 1898. Mer
On Feb. 17 Captain Polack of the Ger chant ships commissioned as auxiliary